The maid of honor refers to a bride’s honor attendant who hasn’t tied the knot yet. The matron of honor refers to one who is married. It’s perfectly OK to have one of each in the bridal party. These women will be the ones standing directly to the left of the bride during the wedding ceremony.


When it comes to the responsibilities of these two ladies, there aren’t many substantial differences. They are both there for the same reason: to help you plan the big day and support you from the engagement all the way to walking down the aisle. Split up important tasks before, during and after the wedding to make each person feel just as involved. Here are a few tasks they both can share…

Before the Wedding

  • Help decide on a wedding theme, color palette, venue and reception site
  • Contribute to organizing the guest list and addressing the wedding invitations to all of the guests
  • Direct the other bridesmaids through their duties and make sure everyone attends the fittings and finds the right dress and jewelry
  • Always willing to lend an ear, whether it’s about the wedding planning or deciding at which store to register
  • Keep a record of all of the gifts received at various parties and showers or delegate the responsibility to other bridesmaids
  • Help with the wedding favors and assists in picking out gifts for the bridesmaids
  • Plan the bridal shower and bachelorette parties with the help of the other bridesmaids
  • Look into the hotel arrangements for out of town guests

During the Wedding

  • Help get the bride ready for the big day
  • Make sure all bridesmaids get their hair and makeup done and get to the ceremony on time
  • Hold the bride’s bouquet during the ceremony
  • Make sure the bride gets something to eat in between all the exciting and chaotic wedding moments
  • Gives a maid of honor or matron of honor speech at the reception

After the Wedding

  • Ensure that all of the gifts are carefully assembled and sent away to the correct location
  • Help the bride change into her going away outfit and make sure the bride’s belongings are sent safely back to her house

Photo credit: Nancy Ray via Southern Weddings